Leo Matiz summarized his artistic pursuits by saying: “I am a painter because of activism, photographer because of hunger, and crazy because of talent.” Indeed, Matiz began his career as a caricaturist for political and literary publications, with a keen eye for gesture, features, and scathing humor. These illustrations were particularly influenced by the work of Gustave Doré, George Grosz, Nadar, and Guadalupe Posada. He later began working as a photojournalist in Mexico for a number of international publications, but began to use the medium to explore more artistic themes. His keenness for caricature served him well in his photographic portraiture, for which he is best recognized today. Matiz’s subjects included Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, José Clemente Orozco, Marc Chagall, and Pablo Neruda.
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